Biden White House urged by Democrat candidates to take action on marijuana
United States Senate candidate and current lieutenant governor of the Keystone State John Fetterman used a Labor Day meeting with President Joe Biden to advocate for the legalization of marijuana. Fetterman, who received the Democrat’s nomination for the U.S. Senate in May, is a long-time advocate for decriminalizing and legalizing marijuana in Pennsylvania. His request to Biden is simple: Start the process of rescheduling cannabis at the federal level so that nonviolent cannabis offenders can move on with their lives.
In April, Biden’s administration granted amnesty to more than 70 people convicted of marijuana crimes but has not taken action to change the plant’s current federal classification. Marijuana is a Schedule I substance under the Controlled Substances Act. Other Schedule I substances include heroin, LSD, and ecstasy.
Fetterman is unconvinced that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. Biden has long opposed legalization and only recently opened up to decriminalization while on the campaign trail in 2020. In a press statement late last month, Karine Jean-Pierre explained that Biden is open to leaving legalization for medical and recreational use up to the states, rescheduling cannabis to a Schedule II substance, decriminalizing the plant at the federal level and automatically expunging any existing prior criminal records.
This is a major step for the Biden administration, which has remained relatively unclear where they stand on cannabis legalization. Biden’s White House fired employees who admitted to past marijuana use but are doing everything in their power to free WNBA star Brittney Griner from her decade-long marijuana-related conviction.
Legalization is an issue that Democrats are openly campaigning on in the 2022 midterm cycle. As the popularity of marijuana continues to grow, Democrats believe that it is an issue that might save them the House and expand their leadership in the Senate. So far, the Biden administration has served as a roadblock in their fight for legalization, but that may all change just in time for the November 8th elections.